I’ve been in Sverige for 12 weeks now and I don’t think I could’ve picked a better place to come!
I arrived in august to what was apparently one of the best Swedish summers had in many years. Twenty five degrees and sunny for the whole month. I even managed to get myself a little sun-burnt one fine day which the swedes found hilarious considering my origins. The summer here is beautiful and I would recommend anyone to visit and just explore the country side. There is just so much green and so much beauty in the forests and in the archipelagos that surround Stockholm. Ferries out to the islands are also pretty cheap and occur often so if you’re looking for a cheap mini holiday while you’re here you don’t have to go far. Stockholm city itself is also a site to behold. There are some great places where you can get a nice view of the skyline and really appreciate the city for what it is. There are just so many places I’ve discovered around the city which hold buildings that precede the colonization of Australia, so many cobbled streets, old churches and so many statues and monuments. There is also I nice open air history museum called Skansen, where you can wonder around for a whole day exploring Swedish history and looking at some of Sweden’s more exciting wildlife.
I study here at KTH, The Royal Institute of Technology. The university itself covers quite a large area and the majority of the buildings are old and cool/horgwarts looking, which gives you the feel that there is a lot of history all around you. The university culture is quite different from that of UTS with each discipline of engineering and field of study having there own “club” and there own bar to drink at, which is of course open to everyone. So know matter what day it is there is always a pub open somewhere or something going on. Most clubs or groups also do a lot during O-week as they welcome their new members, including many ‘initiation rituals’ which I can’t go into but are a lot of fun. The Gasque culture is truly something that I think Australia is missing out on. It is basically just eating, drinking and singing some traditional drinking songs, but there is a certain air to it that you will never find at any pub, club or party back home. It helps a little if you can learn a bit of Swedish before endeavoring to sing in it, but if not never mind, as long as you eat, drink and be merry you’ll fit right in. I’ve only met a few Swedes who don’t speak English also, so in social situations they tend to be very polite and speak English so you can be included in the conversations.
Winter is coming!! and it is cold, very cold. Don’t let the sun deceive you, it may look sunny and nice outside but it could in fact be well below zero. It has apparently already started snowing occasionally but it doesn’t stick through the day until December I’m told. I’m quite excited to see it actually snowing having not seen it before. Most swedes seem to consider winter a dark and miserable time, but I’m sure the experience will be a positive thing for me in the end.
Clyde Webster, 11242435